Online Safety for Parents & Carers
The Importance Of Online Safety
Digital technologies have become integral to the lives of children, both within and outside school. These technologies are powerful tools, which open up new opportunities for everyone. They can stimulate discussion, promote creativity and kindle awareness of contexts to promote effective learning.
All children are entitled to be safe whenever they access the Internet. At Nunney First School, we take active steps to embed online safety in our curriculum and children’s learning. We also want to help parents and carers improve their own understanding of online safety, so that they can support their children to use the Internet and digital media in a safe and responsible way.
Please look at each section below to find out how we approach online safety in school. We also provide links to easily accessible online safety resources for parents and carers.
Keeping Children Safe Online
Parents are encouraged to work in partnership with the school to teach children about the importance of online safety. Children use the Internet to learn, play, socialise and express themselves. It is a highly creative place and offers a wealth of opportunity. The technology that children use every day may seem daunting to parents and carers, who often worry about the risks children can face online.
Get Safe Online has produced a simple checklist parents can use to help protect children when they are online, and reduce the risks they take.
Talking To Your Child About Online Safety
Below are some online safety conversation starters from Childnet. They can be used to help you monitor and support your child’s online activity and safety.
- Ask your child to tell you about the sites they like to visit and what they enjoy doing online.
- Ask them about how they stay safe online. What tips do they have for you? What is okay and what is not okay to share?
- Ask your child if they know where to go for help, where to find safety advice and how to report or block the services they use.
- Encourage your child to help you. They might be able to show you how to do something better online.
Remember to return to the questions with your child over time. Think about how you use the Internet as a family. What could you do together to get more from the time you spend online?
Online Safety Resources For Parents/Carers
These sites offer good and easily accessible online safety support and guidance for parents/carers. They will help you and your child to benefit from connected technology and the internet, safely and smartly.
- Thinkyouknow – advice from the National Crime Agency to stay safe online
- Internet Matters – practical tips to help children use the Internet safely
- Parent Info – help and advice for families in a digital world
- LGfL – support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online
- Net Aware – advice for parents and carers from the NSPCC
- Let’s Talk About It – support for parents and carers to keep children safe from online radicalisation
- UK Safer Internet Centre – tips, advice and guidance
This is a great article to help parents/carers support children to stay safe during online video meet-ups.
There is also Government guidance for virtual video conferencing for children of primary school age: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/files/vtc_infographic.pdf
These activities are for three different age groups. They are good for thinking about online safety at home. There are videos, questions and short activities to complete.
If you need help working our what games, books and films are suitable for your child then ‘Taming gaming’ and ‘Common sense’ media are two excellent sites. Click on the images to go to the websites.
Taming Gaming says “Every game is presented for parents and carers to understand, to empower informed choice through understanding.”
Common Sense Media says “Every day, millions of parents and educators trust Common Sense reviews and advice to help them navigate the digital world with their kids.”
Online Safety At School
We encourage children at Nunney First School to ‘Be SMART with a heart’ online. Click here to learn about about the Be SMART steps.
Access to the Internet is provided during adult supervised lessons. At Nunney First School, we view access to and use of the web and email as hugely worthwhile and an essential tool for children as they grow up in the modern world. In school, we have taken active steps to reduce the risks associated with use of the Internet. Our school Internet access provider operates a filtering system that restricts access to most inappropriate material. All of our teachers and teaching assistants have received training in online safety and how to teach this.
Across the year, as part of PSHE and computing lessons, children discuss how they can stay safe online and the potential dangers faced when using the Internet. Using resources produced by 2Simple (Purple Mash), Somerset ActivBYTES and other online materials, teaching is tailored to each age group, so that skills and approaches children can use to keep themselves safe online are built systematically over time, using resources and language that are age appropriate.
Each child signs an ‘Acceptable Use Agreement’ so that we know they have read and discussed rules the school has to help them stay safe when working and communicating electronically.